- 08 Nov 21
Dublin-based poet/songwriter shares intimate debut
Having won the 2021 Hume Prize with his debut full collection of poetry, it’s not surprising that Christian Wethered has emerged as one of the most lyrically captivating forces on the Irish music scene.
Like Benjamin Clementine before him, time spent living in France has had a major influence on Wethered’s debut – there’s a similar gravitation towards eerie drama and bohemian flair as the Mercury winner’s early work, although Mon Petit Jardin operates in a much more intimate, contained world. There are also touches of Nick Cave, Leonard Cohen and Jeff Buckley, as Wethered explores a world that straddles both stark vulnerability and grandeur.
Although he’s subtly shifting between genres throughout – including a nod to acoustic indie-pop on ‘Way Back’ – the album largely embraces one central, gently meandering energy, avoiding any major twists in the journey.
Given the Dublin-based artist’s struggles with myalgic encephalitis, also known as chronic fatigue syndrome, the fact that the album is in existence at all is an impressive feat. While he credits the hard work of his session players (including Soda Blonde’s Dylan Lynch and Basciville’s Cillian Byrne), as well as producer Darragh Nolan, for helping to bring the album to fruition during the height of his suffering, Mon Petit Jardin, remarkably, doesn’t sound like a project grounded in pain.
In fact, there’s a weightless, serene quality that stretches across the LP – perfect for moments of stillness, or as a balm in the midst of chaos.